Keys For Dealing With a Brain Injury Claim
Know Your Limitations
There are many limitations and obstacles encountered by victims of a traumatic brain injury. It is crucial to learn of and document the severity of injury and extent of how it has impacted the life of the victim. Sometimes it may interfere with one’s ability to simply mow the lawn or be intimate with a spouse. Be mindful of the specifics on how your injury affects your daily life.
There are a number of documents that one should keep handy for use in their brain injury claim. Obviously, objective medical records are necessary in proving the existence of a closed head injury. Furthermore, it’s important to keep records of all bills you receive and doctors from whom you sought treatment.
Some not so obvious records include payment for things like the following scenario:
You would typically fix your plumbing if there is an issue; but due to your traumatic brain injury, you can no longer perform such tasks for your family. Therefore, you might be forced to hire someone.
In these scenarios, it’s important to keep an accurate recording of your expenses. This helps bring certainty to your valuation of losses due to the incident.
It is also essential to provide your attorney with the names of individuals you are either friends or colleagues with. We generally label such individuals as “before and after witnesses.” It can be extremely beneficial for the attorney to meet with individuals who had spent considerable time with you prior to the traumatic event, which caused the injury. Such individuals can provide testimony as to how the brain injury victim has changed since sustaining trauma to the head. This may include issues pertaining to short term memory loss, difficulty coping with issues, inability to concentrate or stay on task, depression as well as a host of other conditions that often manifest following a traumatic brain injury.
Choosing An Attorney
We discussed this quite heavily in a previous article. Experience is one of the greatest differences between various attorneys. When deciding on representation for a traumatic brain injury case make sure your attorney has experience not only in the pre-litigation aspect of a personal injury case, but more specifically has previously successfully litigated a brain injury case.
Injuries to the brain make for a unique area of practice. Many lawyers are not well-versed in this field of law and science. Thus, their clients often fail to receive the proper compensation and treatment for such injuries. A majority of my clients are required by my firm to fill out a brain injury questionnaire, as many closed head injuries are not properly diagnosed at the emergency room or by the treating physician who fails to document conditions that are consistent with such. We carefully interview our clients to learn whether such individual has manifested with a headache, changes to their sleep, sense of smell, ability to concentrate, difficulty with short term memory or changes to their personality among others.
If you’re not sure who to choose, seek out other attorneys who do not practice injury law. The legal community is generally aware of who are the best and brightest attorneys in different areas of practice. Be wary of referral services like 411 pain or AskGary. To become a member of many referral services, an attorney simply must maintain malpractice insurance, be licensed by the Florida Bar and willing to pay a monthly fee to the service. Attorneys who are members of lawyer referral services such as 411-pain do not possess any special skill or traits as opposed to their peers who are not members of a lawyer referral service. Please see these posts. In fact, a majority of the elite personal injury attorneys as recognized by Florida Trend’s magazine or by Superlawyers are not affiliated with a lawyer referral service. These law firms and attorneys generate a majority of their business from referrals provided by former and current clients as well as fellow attorneys who are keenly aware of who is competent in the field of personal injury and brain injury litigation.
We are pleased to state that a majority of our clients at Dolman Law Group, were referred by previous clients, as well as fellow attorneys in the Tampa Bay are who recognize the work we have done.
Process and Length of a Case
The path to processing your claim is not a quick sprint, but more like a marathon.
If the insurance company rejects paying the full value of your claim, then your attorney may choose to litigate the case. As attorney Christian Meyer discussed in a recent post Client Expectations Concerning Litigation Cases, litigation can be a long process. Between filing the complaint, awaiting response, examining discovery, scheduling depositions, and awaiting trial.
However, rest assured that if you’re a client with the Dolman Law Group, we do everything in our power to get your case prepped and ready for trial in the most efficient way possible. We understand that coping with a TBI and the accompanying claim are extremely stressful. We seek to mitigate that stress by providing you with competent and personal legal representation. We give clients our personal phone numbers to ensure that we’re there when you need us.
If you have sustained an injury to your head and require the assistance of a brain injury attorney in Clearwater, please call the lawyers at Dolman Law Group for a free consultation and case evaluation. Dolman Law Group – (727) 451-6900